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"Seam"ingly Harmless

Shannon ShafferComment

The other day I was driving down the highway headed to work. I knew there was a construction zone up ahead, in Oklahoma there is almost always construction ahead 😅. Anyway, I was ready for it. I slowed way down and got over to avoid the traffic that needed to merge, and kept right on going in my same direction. There was a car next to me on one side and a concrete barrier on the other, so there wasn’t much room for error. All of a sudden I felt my steering wheel jerk. It felt like my car had a mind of its own! I tightened my grip and tried to regain control. I panicked! I knew if I pulled too hard to the left or the right I would end up side swiping something. All of this took just seconds from start to finish, but so many thoughts went through my mind that it felt like much longer. And what I realized as I was finally able to regain control of my vehicle again is that the cause of all that had happened was just a little seam in the road. 

Because of the construction, the lane I was in was normally used as a shoulder and the gap in the pavement was meant as an obvious marker to cars that they were no longer in a drivable lane. As my cars’ tire landed in that seam, it took the path of least resistance that the road provided. As the driver, I was no longer able to maintain control without constant and intentional guidance. Passing through the construction I thought about how easily I lost control of the situation because I was unprepared. 

I hadn’t counted on a distraction, I didn’t expect a diversion. 

I wish I could say this was a one time occurrence, but unfortunately I have let this happen in other areas of my life before as well. I think I have something all figured out then wham I’m headed down a path I never meant to take. I had this idea of my own self control being much greater than it actually was. See, I am a super organized person. I keep lists of lists! I figure because I have a plan for how everything should play out nothing can veer me away from the self marked agenda that is my life. I have had to find out the hard way that I am not the “queen of self control!” There have been situations in which I have let my guard down because I honestly believed I was above getting sidetracked because it wasn’t part of MY plan! 

Now, I’m not talking about Gods plan, I believe His plan trumps mine every time. I’m only talking about the day to day decisions that are always in front of us. 

Having a plan is great, but if I think I am incapable of being derailed, I am only fooling myself. I can easily become so reliant on my own self control that I no longer think I need to be on guard for the unexpected, and that’s a very dangerous place to be. According to Romans 12:3: “you are not to think more highly of yourself and of your importance and ability than you ought to think...” Sometimes something that appears so minor, like a seam in the road, has taken you in a direction you didn’t want to go, and landed you somewhere you didn’t want to end up. Lisa loves to use this quote,”the devil will always take you farther than you wanted to go and keep you longer than you wanted to stay.” 

Satan has curated a distraction designed especially for you. One that is “seam”ingly harmless because otherwise we would turn and run the other direction. 

So be prepared! Equip yourself in advance with a course of action, because whether we mean to or not sometimes we are shifted into lanes that were not intended for our travel. The creator of those highways never meant for the shoulder to be driven on. And our Creator doesn’t desire a life for us lived in a lane outside of His perfect design. 

So here’s my new plan; for me in the past self reliance=pride, so,”God help me to stay humble enough to know the only thing I can control is if I’m going to wake up everyday and ask for Your help with what lies around every unseen corner. 

You alone know where that bump in my road lies in wait to divert my direction from the good and perfect plan you have set my feet upon!”

Proverbs 3:6 promises,”in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

Now that sounds like a road I want to travel!